I have made a little bit of progress on my first sweater. I have the cross over stitch collar finished and since taking these photos, I'm part way through the increases. Notice how the color swirls around the collar? I'm glad that didn't continue down the body of the sweater. I'm pretty sure that stripes swirling down the length of my torso wouldn't be a good look. But I'm sure as the increases are added that the color pooling will continue to change.
I did a bad thing when starting this sweater. I only halfway did a gauge swatch. I tried knitting a swatch in the round on US#7's and my gauge was way too tight so I didn't even try blocking the swatch. I cast on for another swatch on size US #8's and then decided to just cast on for the sweater and see what happened.
My gauge still is a little tight, but not too tight I hope. I'm hoping that if the sweater is too tight the first time I go to try it on that I can add another increase or two, but if that doesn't work I'll frog it and start over. That will be my punishment for not working out the whole swatching thing in the beginning.
So far I have followed the pattern as written except for the first row. I could not get the cross over stitches into the ribbing in the first row because my cast on was just a little too tight. So I just did the ribbing without the cross overs for that first row only. I like the cross over stitches. For some reason the pattern calls for the cross over stitches on the collar and the sleeve cuffs, but not the waistband. I'll probably go ahead and add the same detail to the waistband too.
So far I really like knitting with this yarn. It is soft and not scratchy at all. I get the feeling that if the sweater does eventually get finished and turns out to fit that I will like wearing it a lot. I am curious about using the yarn for socks. I would think that it would make very soft socks, but I have read that socks made from Supermerino don't wear very well. I wonder if that is also true for Ultramerino as well.